Kiko Suarez, PhD, is the Chief Strategy and Innovation Officer for the American College of Education. He joined the Antioch University Board of Governors in November 2018 and will be attending his first Board meeting in February 2019. Kiko is a graduate Antioch’s PhD in Leadership & Change program.
What about Antioch University do you find most compelling and intriguing?
As an Antioch University alum myself, I find both the quality of education and the unwavering commitment to student learning and social justice very compelling. I’m a graduate of Cohort 10 of the PhD in Leadership and Change program, and I believe there is an opportunity to explore that program’s geographically-dispersed and noncourse-based model further.
I am sure you have many responsibilities currently in your life. What has drawn you to serve on the Board of Governors of Antioch University?
I believe in giving back. This institution gave me a lot more than a higher education degree. Antioch University gave me the space and tools to reflect critically about the role and impact I could have in the world, in an inclusive and respectful way. I am a firm believer in the role that academics and academic institutions,especially this one, must play in changing public discourse towards a more ethically, environmentally, and socially responsible one.
What contributions do you hope to bring as a Board member to leading Antioch University?
I have extensive international experience in business, marketing, communications, and innovation. I have invested the last ten years of my career in education, first at Lumina Foundation as vice president of communications and innovation for eight years, and later at United Way. I have recently joined American College of Education, a private online institution, as Chief Strategy and Innovation Officer. I would like to help the Antioch Board see the great potential that Antioch University has, beyond its current constraints, so we can collectively increase its reach all over the world.
What do you hope to learn as a Board member about leading universities in today’s complicated environment?
I would like to understand our degrees of freedom to generate revenue from both credit-bearing and noncredit bearing programs. Understanding our current business model will be a key to be able to effectively contribute.
If I were to do this interview with you 5 years from now, what would you like to be able to say about Antioch University?
Antioch University has created a sustainable path to serve more students around the world, including those who fight for social and environmental justice, while taking a leading role in resetting our public discourse in favor of a more inclusive and equitable society.
About your service on the Board?
I hope that my service will help Antioch thrive. My own research and doctoral dissertation was about wisdom and innovation in higher education, and I hope I can bring some of that learning to my involvement on the Board so that Antioch University can best serve undergraduate and graduate students.
What would you like our readers to know about you that they might not know from your brief bio statement?
A secret passion of mine is to learn how technologies can enhance societies and even human capacities beyond our current biological evolutionary limitations in an ethical and equitable way. Can we go from Artificial intelligence in machines to Enhanced Wisdom in humans? How can we use technology to create a wiser world?
Dr. Juan “Kiko” Suarez likes to be described as a global citizen. Born in Spain, Kiko has a unique blend of international experience in marketing and communications, corporate responsibility and information technology in Fortune 500 corporations, entrepreneurial startups and strategic philanthropy. From 2009-2016, Kiko served as lead executive for communications and innovation at Lumina Foundation. He also directed the Foundation’s work in social impact investing and evaluation. Prior to 2009, he served as a public affairs and communications executive for NextPhase Wireless and CEMEX. Kiko’s extensive background in corporate communications also includes more than a decade at DuPont, where he rose from the ranks of the information technology team to global online leader.
Kiko earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Oviedo (Spain), where he also earned secondary degrees in management of telecommunications and new media. He earned a master’s and executive MBA from Oxford International University and Theseus Business School (France), respectively. He has a doctoral degree in Leadership and Change from Antioch University and he was awarded the title of “doctor honoris causa” from National Louis University. Among his many publications and speeches, his dissertation was on the role of wisdom in leadership and innovation processes, which he presented at TEDx at the Hilbert Circle Theatre in 2014.